A History of Mud-Slinging, Character Assassination, And Other Election Strategies
Today's political pundits express shock and disappointment when candidates resort to negative campaigning. But history reveals that smear campaigns are as American as apple pie. "Anything for a Vote" is an illustrated look at 200-plus years of dirty tricks and bad behavior in presidential elections, from George Washington to Barack Obama and John McCain. Let the name-calling begin
- 1836: Congressman Davy Crockett accuses candidate Martin Van Buren of secretly wearing women's clothing: "He is laced up in corsets "
- 1864: Presidential candidate George McClellan describes his opponent, Abraham Lincoln, as "nothing more than a well-meaning baboon "
- 1960: Former president Harry Truman advises voters that "if you vote for Richard Nixon, you ought to go to hell "
Full of sleazy anecdotes from every presidential election in United States history, "Anything for a Vote" is a valuable reminder that history does repeat itself, that lessons can be learned from the past (though they usually aren't), and that our most famous presidents are not above reproach when it comes to the dirtiest game of all--political campaigning.
About the Author
Joseph Cummins is the author of numerous books, including Anything for a Vote: Dirty Tricks, Cheap Shots and October Surprises in U.S. Presidential Elections; A Bloody History of the World, which won the 2010 Our History Project Gold Medal Award; and the forthcoming Ten Tea Parties: Patriotic Protests That History Forgot. He lives in Maplewood, New Jersey, with his wife and daughter.